Take the 2-minute tour ×
English Language & Usage Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for linguists, etymologists, and serious English language enthusiasts. It's 100% free, no registration required.

One of the tasks I have as site maintainer of a site is deleting spam reported from users. (The spammer account is blocked too, as part of the process.)

Which is the preferable sentence, or the most correct one, I should use?

I have blocked the user account, and deleted the comments.

I blocked the user account, and deleted the comments.

share|improve this question
add comment

5 Answers 5

up vote 4 down vote accepted

As others have said, neither is more correct, nor is either more preferable in an objective sense. If you were to indicate when you blocked the account you must use the latter, but otherwise either is perfectly fine.

For me, personally, I would prefer the latter in most cases - it's less formal and sounds (to me) more like natural speech, and is (slightly) less verbose.

I, too, would drop the comma in this context, for whatever that's worth.

EDIT I would use the former if I had blocked the comment before and had to do so again: "I have previously blocked the user account..."

share|improve this answer
add comment

If this was a software message, as it seems it may be, I would not use that tense. Instead I would say:

The user account has been blocked and all comments deleted.

Otherwise in a regular conversation the latter sentence (minus the comma) would be correct.

share|improve this answer
add comment

I have blocked the user account, and deleted the comments.

This is the present perfect tense.

I blocked the user account, and deleted the comments.

This is the past tense.

Which one is preferable, or more correct?

Either one is correct. There is a difference between the two, but without context it would be silly to try to explain it.

share|improve this answer
add comment

I have blocked the user account, and deleted the comments.

I blocked the user account, and deleted the comments.

Which one is preferable, or more correct?

There are differences between North American English and British English. For North American English, this is the present perfect of current relevance/importance.

Often, unless the speaker wishes to illustrate that a past action is important to the current situation, the simple past is used.

There is also a myth that we never use a past time adverbial with the present perfect and most often that is true, the reason, the "job" of the present perfect is not to reflect on the past and using past time adverbs would take away from that ideal. However, there are situations where this is not followed. As I said they are not at all common.

share|improve this answer
add comment

Both are correct, although I would consider the comma optional. The word "have" is unnecessary.

I would personally choose the second sentence, unless context dictated otherwise. (For example, if the text surrounding the example sentence was particularly formal.)

share|improve this answer
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.